PDFs Won’t Open on Mac? What’s Wrong? How Do I Fix The Issue

No matter what I do, my Mac won’t open PDF files.

When it comes to reading documents, PDFs reign supreme. They allow the same content and layout to be displayed across all the devices. That said, users do face issues with these files. There are some users on Mac, who aren’t able to open PDFs on their device.

In this post, we are going to address this issue and have a look at various methods you can undertake if a PDF or PDFs won’t open on your Mac

Things You Can Do If PDFs Don’t Open On Your Mac

Solution 1 – Restart Mac

Don’t immediately jump on any advanced measures. Try something simple and basic – restart your Mac. Regularly restarting Mac helps reboot apps, and the operating system as well as cleans active memory and installs all pending updates. Maybe a quick restart is all that you need and you’ll then be able to open PDFs on Mac.

Solution 2 – Update Your PDF App

If you are not able to open PDFs on Mac, it could be that you are using an outdated version. Here we will take the example of Adobe Acrobat, one of the most used PDF viewers and editors on Mac. To update Adobe Acrobat –

1. Launch Adobe Acrobat.

2. Click on Help and then Check for Updates.

Check for Updates

3. If there is an update available, you’ll be notified as shown below. Click on Yes to proceed.

update available

4. Once the update is installed, click on OK.

Solution 3 – Uninstall and Reinstall The PDF App

Still unable to open PDFs on Mac? You can try uninstalling your PDF app and reinstalling it. By uninstalling we mean a complete uninstallation. Sometimes a normal uninstallation may leave behind remnants and unwanted files because of which you might not be able to open PDF files, even if you have reinstalled the PDF app again. In this post, we have talked about ways to completely uninstall your PDF application.

Solution 4 – Use An Alternate PDF Viewer and Editor.

If PDFs on Mac are not opening with your existing PDF viewer, you can try out an alternate PDF viewer application. For instance, Wondershare PDFelement for Mac is one of the best PDF viewers and editors for Mac that can help you with viewing, editing, signing, protecting, and performing a lot many tasks related to PDFs on Mac.

What Features Does Wondershare PDFelement for Mac Bring To The Table?

Wondershare PDFelement

  • Batch edit PDFs
  • Convert to various file formats
  • Annotate PDFs
  • Compress PDFs
  • Sign and password protect

How To Use Wondershare PDFelement for Mac

Here’s a comprehensive tutorial on how you can perform a variety of tasks to edit or annotate PDFs on Mac using Wondershare PDFelement.

Solution 5 – Repair Your PDF

In case none of the other solutions have worked, it could be that your PDF file or files are to be blamed. Quite possibly they have become corrupt while being sent over email or while transferring from a device to Mac. In this case, you can use a dedicated PDF viewer like Stellar Repair for PDF for Mac.

It is a professional tool that can repair corrupt PDF files. It can restore all elements in a PDF such as forms, clip art, page format, shapes, word art, etc. It can even restore audio, videos, and digital signatures of a damaged PDF file.

How To Repair PDF on Mac Using Stellar Repair for PDF

1. Download, run, and install Stellar Repair for PDF.

2. Select the PDF files that you want to repair.

PDF files

3. Click on the Repair button to start the repair process.

Repair button

4. You can also preview PDF files after the repair process is completed.

preview PDF files

5. Save the repaired PDF at a desired location on your Mac.

repaired PDF at a desired location

Can You Now Open PDFs On Mac?

We understand that not being able to open PDFs on Mac when needed can hamper your productivity especially if your job requires you to analyze documents. Do give these solutions a try and let us know if you have been able to fix the issue. And, if you have a more efficient trick up your sleeve, do share it with us in the comments section below. Wish to read and discuss more such tech-related tips, tricks, how-to’s, software/ app listicles, and more, Hit us up on YouTube, FacebookInstagram, Twitter, and Pinterest.

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